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July 3, 2002

Martina Navratilova

Wimbledon, England

MODERATOR: I wonder if you have any questions for Todd, could you ask them first, please.

TODD WOODBRIDGE: If you want me to go...


Q. The frequent rain delay, did it affect either of you? I know it's Wimbledon, you've played here so many times. It just seemed on and off so many times.

TODD WOODBRIDGE: No, you are used to them here. Martina has had more experience than me. I've had a lot. You get into a routine of what you do during the rain delays here, whether it's have a cup of tea, some guys play backgammon. I have a cup of tea and biscuits, do the English thing. In our match today, you know, another rain delay sort of early in the second may have helped us. They got a little bit of momentum, started to make better returns. You know, in actual fact, it could have been to our advantage to have another one a little earlier than when we got it.

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: A little too late.

TODD WOODBRIDGE: It's something that everybody deals with in their own way. I think you'll find everybody has a routine they do every time they come in off the court.

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: One more warm-up, I'll be too tired to go play. I was on that bike all the time, doing my sprint work and everything. But it was cold out there. That's what I had a problem with, just cold, in the second set. Third set was a little warmer.

Q. As two of the better volleyers the sport has known, what do both or either of you make of some of the players left in the men's draw, the three South Americans, then the top seed?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: I think the grass is playing a higher bounce. It doesn't get as worn out because not that many people serve and volley, and there's not as much doubles played out there as there used to be on the show courts. The bounce is truer, gives the baseliners a chance. There are just fewer great volleyers. It's very simple. So the baseliners can get away with staying back.

TODD WOODBRIDGE: I think for me watching a lot of the men's game, it's a distinct - what's the right word - a distinct look of the way the court has changed for me this year. I believe they've changed the mix of grass, a different percentage. There are particular courts when you watch that are much slower. Court 18, the ball tends to prop up, it doesn't flow through and skid through like you'd expect a grass court to do. You know, I think the All England Club has really tried to make the men's game, particularly, a more all-court, grass court game, not just a serve, big serve. I think that has started to take effect. The ball is definitely slower.

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: I think that's what really hurt Pete.

TODD WOODBRIDGE: The cover is bigger on the ball - after about two or three games, it fluffs up more. There isn't as many aces as there was. That helps the good returners, helps the baseliners to stay in the points a bit more.

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: The speed of the serve is still high when it comes off the racquet. By the time it gets all the way over there -- I mean, Pete is not serving that much worse. All of a sudden he's hitting three half volleys a game, when he used to hit three a set.

Q. There's a turf they tie together with thread, which has really slowed the turf down.

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: They use thread on the court?

Q. They use it in football fields.

TODD WOODBRIDGE: I think that's what you're seeing, particularly in the fact that you have South Americans coming through. Really, baseliners. Everybody has a good all-court game these days, volleys well, but they're not serve and volleyers.

Q. With all the talk on the women's tour of fitness, size, muscle, sometimes it's positive, sometimes not so positive. Can you talk about the reaction, when you first went into the gym, which really set the trend, the reaction that you got when you came back and had a whole new level of fitness, and a different look to the women's game.

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: Well, that was 20 years ago - 21, to be exact. I didn't get muscled up. I just got fit. I didn't really get stronger, but I was able to maintain it throughout a match. I didn't get tired ever in a match after I got in shape. So the longer the match went, you know, the better for me. I don't know what you're alluding to when you're talking about negative, if you're talking about the women being muscle-ly.

Q. Sometimes I guess the sense that the game is getting too big and too bulked up, almost like a negative connotation to it.

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: I don't see that take. I haven't seen that. All the athletes are bigger, all the sports: football, baseball, tennis. I think we do it without drugs.

Q. Todd, do you think it's an obvious advantage for Lleyton?

TODD WOODBRIDGE: I think it's an obvious advantage now that he's through to the second week, definitely, because the court is firm now, it's hard. It's still a little slow, but it gives him time. He's a fantastic returner. It gives him time to make every ball; that puts so much pressure on his opponent. The first week is a troublesome time for him, when the court is greener and softer. Doesn't come on to the racquet as easily as it does in the second week. My opinion, I think he's passed maybe the biggest threat for himself in the tournament.

Q. What about these delays, would they help?

TODD WOODBRIDGE: Well, they may not help, but I don't think they'll worry him. Particularly for him today, he hasn't had to start the match. He's not behind in the draw. He's still got days to be able to play, play the next day. If it keeps like this, it becomes a problem. You know, I don't think that he's too worried about too much at the moment. He's pretty relaxed in the locker room. He doesn't look uptight at all.

Q. Can you talk about all the pressure that Amelie was under when she first sort of burst out there and sort of how she's been able to handle that?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: I don't know. I mean, she didn't seem to worry about it one way or the other. The press is making a big deal about it, but to her it wasn't. She handled it very well because she didn't really care what anybody said. She knew who she was. She knows who she is. If somebody has a problem with it, that was their problem, not hers. You know, she's a very healthy, you know, human, up there. She didn't have a problem.

Q. I meant more with being so young at the '99 Australian Open, sort of rising the way she did. She said there was a lot where she felt she had to live up to, that she's only sort of starting.


Q. Yes.

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: I thought you were talking about the coming out bit. She's better than she has shown so far. But this might be her breakthrough tournament. She did break through in the Australian Open tournament. She hasn't lived up to the potential she's had. I think this last year's French Open when she lost in the first round, coming in as a favorite practically, was a real setback for her. But I think she's got a good coaching situation now. We might see the best of her. I'd say it's about time. It's good. When you have so much talent, it's sort of a lose/lose situation. I had the same thing. "How come she doesn't win more?" When I finally did, "It's about time, she has all this talent." Either way, it can be a negative connotation. But she's living up to it now. It's good to see.

Q. Any more for Todd?


Q. As someone who has accomplished so much in the sport, do you have any advice for Anna, who has accomplished so little?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: You know what, you guys -- I want to say something about that BBC interview now that you ask the question in sort of a negative way. When the guy was asking her, you know, about her match, this and that, she didn't like it, so she walked -- she was walking out. She started the interview again. I'm sure you've all seen it. Then he says to her, "Okay, well, you lost your match today. How was your day?" Would he say that to Pete Sampras after he just lost a match? Never, ever. You do not treat men the same way you treat women. The guy showed no respect for her as a human being, never mind a tennis player. That was just a nasty way, I think, -- what kind of answer is he going to get then? And the fact that they ran it, I don't think that was the best thing. That was not the best of BBC. As much as I love their coverage, that was not their best moment. She's had a lot of hype. I've even seen articles about Anna where the press is complaining that people write about her too much. But it's -- the guy's writing the article. Nobody made him write it. Nobody made you ask the questions. I don't think she's really courted the attention, certainly not as much the last couple years. Maybe when she was 15, 16, she was sort of out there for the world to see. But now I think she's been very serious about trying to become a better tennis player. I believe the results will come. If anybody can do it with her, it's Harold Solomon. So, anyway, you know, she's only, what, 18, 19?

Q. 21.



MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: Time flies. She's got time. I didn't really get going till I was 25. But I think she can do better and get into the Top 20, for sure, and hopefully better.

Q. You say the men and women are not treated the same. By the same token, if Pete Sampras never won a championship, he wouldn't be getting $10 million a year from endorsements either.

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: That has nothing to do with being a man or woman. She's a sex symbol. What's the question?

Q. Cashing in on that.

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: She's supposed to say, "No, I don't want your money"? That's like you win the lottery, saying, "No, I don't really deserve it."

Q. They're treated differently, but there's a lucrative part of it, as far as being a sex symbol.

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: That still does not warrant the kind of question that she was asked. Again, she's not taking money away from anybody. She's created a whole new market there on the women's tour, whole new base of fans that want to come see her play. Hopefully they're going to stay. They'll have such a good time that they're going to want to watch the rest of us next time. There's nothing wrong with the attention I think she's brought to the game. Again, she's not the one taking the pictures of herself and putting them on page three.

Q. How do you feel about the fact that sort of 90% of the crowd are shouting, "Anna," 10% "Martina"?

TODD WOODBRIDGE: I don't think it was that much. I had a group of girls for me.

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: Jonas was the one that got left out pretty much. There were about five teenage boys that yelled after every point. There were the 90%. It doesn't bother me. It was a match played in good spirits by all four players. That's what you care about. No double-faults were cheered. You know, it was a fair play kind of a match, kind of the match that I love to play.

Q. Does it get any easier to lose at Wimbledon?


MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: No. Easier to lose? It's never easy to lose. But I went out there, I did the best that I could today. I thought I played pretty well. They came up with some great shots. You know, it could have gone the other way. We certainly didn't deserve to lose 6-2 in the third, but we did. I think we both, you know -- I know I did the best that I can; I know Todd gave it everything he can. We came up short. Winning, losing, again, that's not what it's about. If you do everything you possibly can to win, and you still lose, there's nothing to hang your head about. So I'm walking tall. I did everything I could to win the match.

Q. In terms of legacies to the tour, how high do you rank your contribution of fitness and the trend you set there?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: I have no idea. Have to ask the other players if they paid attention. I don't know. I know more players now are doing trainers, the whole fitness thing is different now. A lot of players are doing the balance thing. But I've changed my training the last couple years. I mean, the fitness ball and the pilates, I did pilates in '89, but I didn't feel that it helped. I did it once, didn't feel anything the next day, and I said, "That's no good, I didn't get sore." I didn't know anybody that did it that could give me positive feedback. I scrapped it. Two years ago, I picked it up again. It's a whole new ballgame. A lot of the players train definitely differently. I think it's the evolution of the game. Everybody has to do it. Maybe I got it started. I don't know. Again, you'd have to ask the other players if they paid attention to what I was doing. Certainly, nobody is serve-volleying, so I don't know if they paid attention.

Q. If Serena and Venus begin a long stream of Grand Slam finals, how different is that going to be from what you and Chris had going?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: Just look at the color of the people, that's the difference right there. I mean, they're, what, 5'10", Venus is 6'3", African Americans, and you've got two white girls going at it. That's a new ballgame nowadays. But the biggest difference obviously is two sisters. That's the thing that sets it apart from all the other sports. I don't know that -- maybe badminton had a brother and brother going at it. But I don't know that. At this level, to have two siblings going at it, 1 and 2, it's amazing.

Q. Do you think Amelie can beat either of them or both of them?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: Well, Amelie, she took care of Capriati pretty well. I don't know what went on because we were playing. But she's always had the game and the physique to compete. Whether she can do it... I mean, obviously she's doing something right. I haven't seen her play that much during this fortnight. But taking care of Capriati like that, you would have to say she certainly has the possibility, yeah. I mean, I wouldn't stake my life on Serena beating her.

Q. How did you two come together as a team? Have you played before?


TODD WOODBRIDGE: No, I -- Martina asked me in Paris if I wanted to play. She's been angry at me apparently from when we played in the US Open.


TODD WOODBRIDGE: A little bit. Anyway, I didn't have a partner here. When you talked about fitness before, I was in the gym one day, watching -- in Paris, watching Martina train. What are you, 45? Do you mind me saying that?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: Everybody knows that.

TODD WOODBRIDGE: At 45, she was training probably harder than 70% of the women on the tour right now. For me, that's like, "Wow, this is amazing that this lady has this much inspiration and goal to continue to train that hard at that age." So I thought it was a fair shot for me to come and play with her. You know, she still has the drive and the motivation to do well. Whether we were going -- we played pretty good today. I felt if we could have, you know, had a little bit more luck and a better draw, we could have been deep into the tournament. Those guys will do pretty well, I think. So that's how we teamed up. Usually if a champion asks you to play, it's hard to knock that back.

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: I wasn't mad at you at the US Open. I lost to you, but I wasn't mad.

Q. Do you still think you have a doubles title in you?

TODD WOODBRIDGE: Sure, in the semifinals of the men's. I've always felt very comfortable at Wimbledon in the doubles court. Obviously, I'm not with Mark Woodforde, but I've had some good experience the last year and a half with Jonas. We've won one major. I think we can still do all right. It's just sort of I like the position we're in. If we continue to play the way we have, there's no one left in the tournament that we can't beat, so that's good.

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: That you haven't beaten already before.

Q. Will you definitely be back here playing at Wimbledon?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: I have no idea. I know I'll be back. Hopefully I'll be back to TV. I think TNT is up for renewal of the contract. Hopefully I'll be back with them.

Q. As far as playing is concerned?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: You know, physically I feel better than I did two years ago. Physically I feel better than I did about 12 years ago. Physically, certainly the body -- I feel like I could keep going like this for a long while. I need to see some results pretty soon. Again, we played well enough to win; we didn't. I haven't done as well, I feel, as I'm playing. But, you know, keep going for the rest of the year and see what happens. I always reevaluate at the end of the year. Next year, I don't know. Might as well flip a coin. Probably. You know, chances are, yeah. But right now, it's up in the air. I don't know.

End of FastScripts….

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